KSHB Channel 41 meteorologist Gary Lezak says has been out of the closet living life as a gay man since the 1980s, a fact family, close friends and colleagues have known for years.
On Tuesday, in a post on Lezak’s Facebook page, the long-time weatherman announced publicly for the first time that he is gay.
One of the area’s more well-known television personalities, Lezak has called Kansas City home for more than 25 years. He said he has been out to fellow employees and friends since his arrival.
“Although I have been out to myself for many years since I was a teenager, it wasn’t until I was around 20 years old, in 1982, when I finally came out to my family and friends,” Lezak wrote. “I proceeded to live my life as a gay man, not necessarily out, but not totally hiding either.”
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The goal for coming out now, Lezak wrote, is to bring awareness and hope to others, especially young people who are dealing with sexuality issues.
“I have always felt, from the time I realized I was gay, that you are born this way,” he wrote.
Lezak, who was diagnosed in 1999 with a rare form of bone cancer, said he is celebrating this month the 20th anniversary of meeting his partner.
“We have grown a happy fulfilling life here in Kansas City,” Lezak wrote.
Lezak added it his his hope that by sharing his story, others will feel more comfortable to be themselves as well.
“Young people who may be struggling with their sexuality, and their parents who may be trying to process it all as well, I know it is not easy,” he wrote. “It can be quite scary. I am hoping to be a good role model for the LGBTQ community.”